Solar powered 'Bigbelly' compactor litter bins rolled out across Cassiobury Park

Six new ‘smart’ litter bins have been installed in Cassiobury Park to help residents and visitors recycle on-the-go and help decrease litter issues in the park...

Published: Thursday, 9th September 2021 Big belly bins

Six new ‘smart’ litter bins have been installed in Cassiobury Park by Watford Borough Council and its environmental solutions provider Veolia, to help residents and visitors recycle on-the-go and help decrease litter issues in the park.

The new solar-powered ‘BigBelly’ bins, capable of compacting up to 960 litres of litter, automatically crush down the litter so they can stomach eight times more waste than a standard litter bin. They also contain sensors that send automatic alerts to our parks staff when nearing full capacity, increasing the team’s efficiency and contributing to a more sustainable town. The bins are also complete with a foot pedal option, enabling people to safely dispose of their rubbish hands-free. 

As the units are enclosed, the waste is completely contained and can't escape from the bin when full, keeping wind-blown litter off the ground. Rodents and other scavengers are not able to get in to the bin to eat leftover food scraps, making cleaner, safer public spaces.

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Elected Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor said: “The Bigbelly bins are fantastic and I’m delighted to see them in Cassiobury Park. Highly visible, easy to use, and environmentally friendly, their super capacity means they need emptying less often, freeing up our contractors to spend more time carrying out other maintenance activities in the park.

"Installing these new solar bins is just one part of our Sustainability Strategy to ensure that we’re a carbon neutral council by 2030 and that we’re all living in a greener town. They enable us to take eight times more rubbish than our standard bins and to know digitally when they need to be emptied. This is more efficient, saves time, keeps our parks cleaner and reduces pollution which endangers wildlife.

Porfolio Holder for Parks, Cllr Tim Williams said “By introducing these bins we will be able to tackle litter at one of the busiest hotspots in the borough. The BigBelly bins are a similar size to normal bins, but with their special technology they keep more waste contained, declutter the area, and create a cleaner and greener Watford.

"The compactor increases the capacity of the bin while the sensors mean we only have to empty the bins after receiving an email alert, allowing us to stop routine daily collections and target our resources more efficiently. Therefore, the bins will help keep the park clean and green, while the technology inside the bin can save the council money.”

Plastic bottles and cans can be placed in the recycling units. Everything else (including disposable coffee cups, plastic bags and food waste) must be placed in the general waste units. The bins have been installed thanks to WRAP’s Litter Binfrastructure grant, where the council received the maximum amount that could be awarded of £25,000.

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